Another 80 BlackBerry Workers Get the Axe

BlackBerry has cut another 80 workers in Waterloo, Ont., as part of its efforts to reduce global headcount by 4,500.

BlackBerry LogoThe company told CBC News that “we are in a period of transition and we must focus on enhancing our financial results to be in a better position to compete in this current mobile environment.”

The beleaguered mobile-phone maker will report third-quarter earnings on Dec. 20 and once again, they’re not expected to be pretty. The company has missed analysts’ revenue expectations in five of the past eight quarters. And, its stock hit yet another 10-year-low on Tuesday after Citigroup analyst Ehud Gelblum issued a sell rating on the stock.

Gelblum wrote that BlackBerry would be worth more if it was sold in pieces and said, “Short of a longshot turnaround and commercialization of the BBM business, we see few options for the company.”

In an effort to make that longshot turnaround, the the company hired John Chen, former CEO of enterprise mobility firm Sybase, as interim CEO and board chairman. Chen has said little about his strategy, though stressed that he’s been through all this before. He’s reaffirmed the company’s commitment to handsets. Its other three pillars, he has said, will be business-focused software solutions, its BlackBerry Messenger application and what it calls “embedded systems.”

BlackBerry’s plan to cut 40 percent of its workforce will leave the company with about 7,000 workers. Meanwhile, other tech vendors — including Apple, Motorola Mobility and Square — are lining up to hire those workers in Waterloo.

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